A Thrilling, Heartfelt Stage Drama, By American Playwright Emanuel Fried, Returns To Chiang Mai.

The Gate Theater Group will remount this timely, important stage play in the Studio theater at Kad Suan Kaew on April 4 through 6 at 7:00 pm with a matinee performance on April 7 at 2:00 pm. Suggested donation 250 baht. Tickets available starting March 8 at the information counter at Kad Suan Kaew Shopping Mall.

“Chiang Mai, Thailand – March 28"

First produced in 1967, “The Dodo Bird,” is an intense one act drama which explores what it means to live on the fringe of society, to be a man who failed to achieve the universal dream of being able to sustain himself and his family and ceased to live by the culture’s standards. The Dodo Bird represents those we often choose not to see; the guy with glazed eyes walking down the street talking to himself, carrying a bottle in a brown paper bag, maybe asking for change. All these Dodo Birds came from someplace, had parents once, maybe their own family, maybe a job.

In this play, set in a nondescript western industrial town, the Dodo Bird is fortunate to work as a millwright’s helper, due to the kindness of millwright Russ Nowark, who keeps him on despite frequent hospital visits for the d.t.’s; the job is just enough to get by on. The story of how this particular human being reached this point of desperation and isolation is revealed in one evening in a bar across the street from the foundry, where the Dodo Bird is sober, washed, and waiting for a visit from his estranged daughter.

The author, Emanuel Fried, ( March 1, 1913 -February 25, 2011) has been a teacher of creative writing at State University College at Buffalo, New York and served as a consultant to the officers of the area’s AFL-CIO Council in carrying out an arts program for labor. He has been a factory worker, a union organizer, a candidate for the U.S. Congress, a writer of fiction and non-fiction in addition to his play-writing, an insurance broker and an actor on Broadway. His first play “Mark of Success”, written in 1939, was not staged until more than 20 years later at Catawba College in Salisbury, North Carolina, as that year’s winner of their New American playwrights Contest.

“The Dodo Bird” first appeared in the winter of 1972-73, issue of Drama and Theater, magazine published by State University College, Fredonia, New York. It was last staged at AUA Language School here in Chiang Mai 5 years ago by The Gate Theater Group.

“Emanuel Fried’s The Dodo Bird is a surprisingly interesting piece of a kind
Of brutal, gutsy realism we seldom see today.”
-The Virginia Pilot

“There is tension here and a highly amusing bit when nice guy outwits brutal guy. There is also some very true language.”
-New York Post

“The Dodo Bird tells a highly suspenseful story and makes some highly relevant points. Mr. Fried is showing us how important job security is to maintenance of personal dignity. He is noting the predicament that faces every worker when he becomes obsolescent along with his job.”
-Nathan Cohen, Toronto Daily Star